The Heart of the Wyld MUSH

:: Heart of the Wyld MUSH Administration

Heart of the Wyld is set in the present day, and based around Yellowstone National Park and its environs. While both the park and the area around it are at least loosely based off the real world, there are some notable differences between it and HotW's version of Yellowstone in the World of Darkness.

Gardiner .................. Largest city in the area
Invincible Stone .......... Regional power and allied Sept
Steel Labyrinth ........... Gardiner's fallen Sept
Umbra ..................... The spirit world and its inhabitants
Yellowstone ............... The park and its environs


The City of Gardiner

*NOTE: The Gardiner, MT of Heart of the Wyld MUSH bears very little relation to the one in the real world. The name, location, and certain early historical elements are the same, while the rest is unique to Heart of the Wyld MUSH.*

Gardiner is located in southwest Montana at the north entrance to Yellowstone, with the Yellowstone River running through the middle of town.

It was founded in 1880, a frontier town that has seen gold rushes, miners, and destructive fires. It was not until the Great Depression that Gardiner started to become anything other than a small town. The Civilian Conservation Corps, a New Deal program, brought hundreds of men and women into Gardiner to work at maintaining Yellowstone, many of whom took up residence after the program ended. Most notably, though, it was under the auspices of the New Deal that that Allied Industrial was founded in 1934, and the company quickly turned to supporting the war effort, first to the Allies in Europe, then to America herself a few years later.

With the establishment of Allied Industrial, Gardiner began on a path of growth that has continued to the present day. By the end of World War II, AI employed hundreds, and shrewd management had gained the company enough defense contracts to continue to thrive for years to come. Although passenger rail traffic to Gardiner ended in the late 1940s, commercial traffic from AI kept the line from closing down.

As the Cold War began in earnest, AI continued to grow, and numerous small businesses sprang up to support both the locals and the constant flow of tourists visiting Yellowstone. To help support its continuing demand for skilled labor, AI helped to fund Allied Technical Institute, or ATI, in 1960. While not a University, thanks to generous donations from AI, the school was able to attract top-notch instructors. ATI quickly established a fair amount of local prestige as well as a solid reputation throughout the region.

Just as war helped to spur the first surge in Gardiner's growth, war was responsible for the second as well. As America became increasingly embroiled in Vietnam, the Army chose Gardiner as one of its wilderness training sites, and for the first time in decades, there would again be a Fort Yellowstone. While not a large facility, it nevertheless brought with it an influx of several thousand soldiers, family members, and support personnel. With the influx of people, small business once again saw many benefits, and Gardiner Airport grew large enough to handle commercial, rescue, as well the occasional military traffic. Private flights over Yellowstone became increasingly popular for tourists.

The last of Gardiner's mainstays was founded in 1970. Lumen Medical, at the time a small medical supply company, was passed down to Aaron Lumen, a recent graduate of Harvard Medical School, and became Lumen Medical Research. The supply company became more of an afterthought, an income generator for the fledgling company, though it remains operating even today. While it struggled in those first few years, Lumen researchers pioneered several techniques in the mid 1970s, and it involved itself in the growing biotechnology field, where it truly earned its reputation.

Today, Gardiner is a city of some 200,000 people. AI is the single largest employer, responsible for employing around 10,000. Tourism still nets a good portion of the city's income, with a wide range of small businesses that cater to visitors and locals alike. ATI is still the most prestigious technical school in the region, and has broadened its course offerings to provide training in a wide array of technical disciplines. Crime is moderate, but largely kept away from the major tourist areas.

¬ top of page

Sept of Invincible Stone

Blood and pain. That is the price that must be paid to hold the power of the caern hidden in the caves of the Teton Range. Some Galliards say this is a curse from the shamans of the Wendigo, from whom the caern was taken, although in earlier days, it had hosted Uktena and Croatan as well. Others simply claim that Earthquake is a harsh master, and that nothing less is to be expected from such a potent caern of stamina. The current incarnation of Invincible Stone was formed only a few years after white settlers came to the area in 1883, bringing with them the Silver Fangs and other European Garou. According to Silver Fang Galliards, the strength of the Wendigo at what was then known as the Sept of the Hoary Brothers was waning badly, to the point where the Silver Fangs had little choice but to step in. Conflict had begun by 1884, but it was not until 1887, after three years of bloody, costly battle that the Silver Fangs would finally kill the last of the Wendigo defenders.

It was, at best, a pyrrhic victory for the Silver Fangs, for the tribe lacked the strength to hold what it had won, and so two other tribes, the Black Furies and the Red Talons, settled in the area as well, and claimed a good deal of authority in the new power structure. Three tribes once again held power at the caern, and it was only with their combined effort that the powerful Earthquake spirit, driven into dormancy by the defeat of the Wendigo, could be reawakened and brought to the newcomers' cause. The devotion to the Wyld of Black Furies, the ferocity of the Red Talons, held together by the leadership of the Silver Fangs pleased Earthquake, much as similar traits in the three pure tribes had many centuries before.

The new sept was renamed Invincible Stone, and the sept was extremely secretive and vigilant, particularly in the first several years, putting as many mystic safeguards in place as possible to see that the name held true, fearing a return of the Wendigo or an assault from the Wyrm. Vigilance, in particular, became a tradition of the sept over time, and this eternal readiness allowed them to come to the aid of smaller septs in the region time and again when danger threatened. Their own defenses proved strong enough to hold off any attackers -- in over 110 years the sept has only been successfully attacked once, and it was thanks to treachery from within that those attackers got past the outer network of caves before they were finally defeated.

By the time the Glass Walkers were taking enough note of Gardiner to begin establishing a sept there, Invincible Stone was firmly established as the regional power, offering its protection to Garou who might be hundreds of miles away in some cases. Thus it was that the Glass Walkers came to them for aid. Steel Labyrinth would be the first major failure by the Garou of Invincible Stone to protect one of their allies when it fell in early 2005. The spirits failed to bring the warnings that should have allowed Invincible Stone to send reinforcements by Moon Bridge; the cause for this is still unknown. The fall of Steel Labyrinth has shaken the faith of some of the small septs that rely on Invincible Stone's military support; worse, it left an opening on the sept's very doorstep that an enemy might exploit. With its existing obligations and the waning numbers faced by all septs in the End Days, the sept was overstretching itself trying to protect the added territory of Yellowstone. Something had to be done to close the gap, and so the elders of the sept sanctioned a pack of seasoned Silver Fangs and Black Furies to go on a quest for a solution -- a quest that would eventually lead to the discovery of a dormant Caern of Questing on Frank Island...

¬ top of page

Sept of Steel Labyrinth

While Grand Teton's Invincible Stone has always been the largest and most influential sept in the region, for many years, it was not the primary protector of Yellowstone. That honor fell to the now defunct Steel Labyrinth sept that was located in the city of Gardiner.

With the rise of Allied Industrial during World War II, a group that had paid little attention to the largely rural town began to take notice -- the Glass Walkers. At first it was largely academic interest and the hopes that, perhaps, the rise of the Weaver could be helped to stay in balance with the wilderness that surrounded it. It was not until a series of industrial accidents at AI in 1965 that resulted in the contamination of miles of the Yellowstone River, combined with the ominous prophecies by one of the more respected Glass Walker Theurges of the area that worse was to come, that the Glass Walkers began in earnest to form an independent sept.

Guided by Cockroach and aided by the Garou of Invincible Stone, the Glass Walkers found and opened a low-powered caern of stealth not far from downtown Gardiner, and it was Chameleon who chose to watch over the sept.

For years, the sept struck at the forces of the Wyrm within Gardiner, winning victories great and small. In was in no small part due to the Garou and kin of Steel Labyrinth that wolves were reintroduced to the park, a victory that earned the sept respect even from the Red Talons of the region, no small feat for a group of urrah.

Since the turn of the century, the Garou of Steel Labyrinth had been reporting increasingly more dangerous encounters with servants of the Wyrm and Weaver in the city, but with the Apocalypse widely believed to be on the horizon, no one paid overmuch attention. It was just another sign of the end times, or so they thought until February of 2005. A pack of Black Spiral Dancers supported by swarms of Wyrm spirits managed to pierce the caern's defenses. The Garou of Steel Labyrinth fought valiantsly, but outnumbered and caught by surprise, it proved to be a massacre. Only a few Garou survived, mostly younger Garou evacuated by moon bridge in a desperate bid to warn allies and call for aid. Though aid did come, it came too late -- Steel Labyrinth was no more.

Rumors of a traitor in the ranks emerged as the Garou of Invincible Stone investigated the matter, but nothing was ever proven. The fact that the site of the caern itself could not be found again made the investigation difficult, and also lead the Garou to believe the power of the caern now served the enemy. Defense of Yellowstone fell to Invincible Stone, but already holding vast territory to watch over, the defense stretched the sept thin. It was this overextension that lead to a pack of Silver Fangs and Black Furies beginning a quest to discover a better solution -- a quest which ultimately lead to the discovery of a caern on Frank Island, and the formation of a new sept...

¬ top of page


The Umbra is a place of magical wonder. It is the World of Darkness' representation of the spirit world. To the Garou, it is 'The True World', where reality is enhanced and intensified.

For more information, please read the +news files on the game.

¬ top of page


"There is nothing so American as our national parks. The scenery and wildlife are native. The fundamental idea behind the parks is native. It is, in brief, that the country belongs to the people, that it is in process of making for the enrichment of the lives of all of us. The parks stand as the outward symbol of this great human principle." -- Franklin D. Roosevelt

Heart of the Wyld's main wilderness setting takes place in Yellowstone National Park.

For more information, please read the +news files on the game.